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Author Topic: Hangover Cure...  (Read 36984 times)
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Smurf
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« on: December 09, 2012, 01:09:43 AM »

I got smashed last night, so today I was otherwise unable to function so I sat on my laptop fiddling with some of my code libraries.

Before I knew it, I realised I was working on a kind of Dark Omen game!

It's only 1 hangover day of coding in so far, but I thought I would share a screenshot with the old community.


* rts.jpg (63.63 KB. 800x600 - viewed 517 times.)


When I first modded Dark Omen I did it for LAN parties as the battle resolution engine for a grand game of Mighty Empires, and with this I am headed in the same direction.  A campaign map coupled with a fast playing RTS engine.

Although not strictly a Dark Omen remake I am toying with the idea of trying out sprites so that I can have massed armies.


* rts2.jpg (37.2 KB. 802x598 - viewed 353 times.)


There's a full day and night cycle, although the shadows at night are not great - but I don't see that as a problem because it's too dark to fight.  I intend to allow the players the choice of what time of day to start battle - with the earliest choice determining the start time and then battle ends when light is too poor to continue.


* rts3.jpg (72.97 KB. 802x598 - viewed 330 times.)


There's a reasonable water effect too.  I'm designing the game to be playable on a reasonably cheap laptop for LAN party use but I'm not sure if this water will work well on low spec machines so there may be an alternative simple water for those players.

In terms of gameplay I'll be drawing heavily on DO, although of course I won't be using the WHFB rules especially with official WHFB games in development, although I will be keeping it fantasy - and there will be Dragons Smiley

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Ghabry
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« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2012, 01:31:15 PM »

Smurf... I remember that name Smiley

You programmed this on one day? Does a hangover give some kind of super powers? Looks really good.

And that must be really a very very old Laptop if you worry about performance.
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olly
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« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2012, 07:15:26 PM »

Hi Smurf- good to have you back, it all looks and sounds amazing! Can't wait to hear more and please let us know if we can be of any assistance.

Smiley

« Last Edit: December 09, 2012, 07:22:08 PM by olly » Logged

and back in Nuln, the ageing Graf Berhardt smiled his secret smile of pride whenever he heard the latest tales of his eldest son's ever growing chain of glorious victories -(sothr manual)
Smurf
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« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2012, 01:41:11 AM »

No super power dueing hangovers unfortunately, although yes it's all one day but a lot of the code and media I already had in my archive. So you could argue that I've been at it for a year or two.

I had friends over today so I only got a couple of bits in. I just need to do towns, villages, Elven castle and flora and then it's time to start playing with units Smiley

I've a busy week ahead - but then it's Xmas break so there's a good chance of rapid progress Smiley

I'll post some new screen shots when the flora is in.

In terms of the specifications, yes I want the entry bar pretty low. It's primary purpose is LAN gaming and these days people don't cart about full spec gaming machines - atleast my friends don't! So it's got to run well enough to run on an entry level business laptop - as I am intending to pack in quite a lot of troops into each unit that's going to create some CPU overhead already and water is computationally expensive, even with shaders, because no matter what you do you're always going to have some kind of cube or reflection mapping which means everything has to be rendered atleast twice.

Ultimately the final specs will likely be decided by what computers my friends have available - and I won't know that until its finished and I know who of my friends are coming to Nerdgasm 2013 Smiley
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Smurf
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« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2012, 10:32:38 PM »

Tonight I did Human villages, Elven towns and an Elven castle.

Here an Elven castle stands proud in the shadow of an unassailable mountain, guarding over the surrounding villages and farms.


* elven1.jpg (62.07 KB. 1027x601 - viewed 370 times.)


A reverse view of the same map, taken from a larger town to the South of the castle.


* elven2.jpg (126.41 KB. 1027x601 - viewed 397 times.)


All the scenery is fractal generated based upon campaign map data, and now that I have all the settlements in I realise I will either need to take out some of the detail from the building models or I will have slightly less in each area, perhaps only 1 terrain piece per map rather than the 9 I originally intended.  This will probably be necessary to get the entry level target machines I am hoping for - but I will leave it for a later stage, first I shall get everything in and running okay on my own laptop.

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Smurf
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« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2012, 12:03:22 AM »

Quickly threw in the human city before bed, thought I'd share some shots.



All settlements increase/decrease in size, by the simple expedient of deleting buildings.



PS: I seem to have filled up the forum upload folder with these shots so I hosted these on my own server, I made them clickable links for full size.
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Ghabry
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« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2012, 10:58:17 AM »

Do you create all the models by yourself? (Except the extreme low resolution grass texture) I like them.
Reminds me a of the game "Mount and Blade"

P.S: Upload folder problem is fixed. I always thought 20 MB is a per user setting but it was the global setting, now its 50 MB...
And you get bonus points for actually using that feature, others are always uploading pics to imageshack Wink
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olly
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« Reply #7 on: December 11, 2012, 11:14:52 PM »

Lovely looking screen shots, if the combat has solid formations (like Dark Omen & unlike Mark of Chaos) then its going to be awesome!

Smiley

(is there any chance I could reuse the scenery for original Dark Omen mods, after downgrading the graphics textures please?)

http://forum.dark-omen.org/3d-scenery-models/new-3d-scenery-models-t855.0.html;msg10436#msg10436
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and back in Nuln, the ageing Graf Berhardt smiled his secret smile of pride whenever he heard the latest tales of his eldest son's ever growing chain of glorious victories -(sothr manual)
Smurf
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« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2012, 12:16:53 AM »

Unfortunately I cannot take much credit for the models, pretty much all you can see in these is the talent of Steve Finney of Arteria3D.  I've got a lifetime subscription to use all of his 3D models which I paid for - so I can use his media in my own releases as long as I credit him.

I've adjusted the ground shader a little to increase the detail as per Ghabry's feedback.  Although it may not look brilliant when at ground level the camera in the final game probably wont go that low and if it does then I will replace the textures that the ground shader uses with something else.  I've been adding new settlement types tonight, a new town type,  an Undead city (which needs more work), and an as yet unallocated city in a Roman style because I had the media...

I've now turned my attention to performance and am rebuilding the scene to lower DIP calls ( basically a DIP call is needed for each 3d surface rendered and has a big impact on performance ).  I am currently getting the code to rebuild the scene geometry and textures of all the static scenery from the result of the fractal render to reduce the number of surfaces and consequently the number of DIP calls.  As a result, I cant show you anything tonight because I have no visible geometry.

Instead, here's a screenshot of the undead city rendered by 3D Studio Max.


* undeadcity.jpg (40.05 KB. 650x347 - viewed 318 times.)


The city is in a Mayan style which I think works really well for Undead heroes, whilst ruins and dungeons are great for encountering roaming undead, I think the style of the Mayan buildings suites an Empire building megalomaniac Necromancer well and I can imagine him going up those steps to performing summoning rituals to build his armies.  With each temple focusing a different kind of magic for different troop types.

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lordbraprus
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« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2012, 04:40:40 PM »

Wow! hi smurf, nice work; that last picture of undead city, can be "modified" and make it looks like the last level of dark omen campaing, the piramid is perfect.

And yes, it reminds to mount and blade XD.

If you try out DO sprites and work, it gonna be awesome when we have the sprites with call of warhammer grapchis
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ito maquiesves
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« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2012, 04:50:13 PM »

I've finished my work on optimising the scene geometry, I created the map below with quite a high content - probably more than would be on a single map in the final game - and my laptop is running it quite well.

In honesty though, my laptop is higher specced than what I want this game to run on, so I probably wont have this many buildings on a map in the final game as I want to give over more processing to the actual units than to the backdrop.

Now that I've done this optimisation I am going to begin work on flora.  I am adding these last because they need to have an alpha channel.  This is quite complex to get working with the water which also uses alpha and when you have multiple alpha surfaces the 3D engine does not know what order to draw things in, so i'm going to begin work and see if we end up with individual trees and forests we can fight inside of like in Total War, or whether they will be more of a solid mass like Dark Omen forests.  I am hoping for the former.

Anyway, on to the screen shots from today scene.


* rtsa1.jpg (69.13 KB. 1021x599 - viewed 293 times.)

* rtsa2.jpg (63.76 KB. 1026x600 - viewed 278 times.)

* rtsa3.jpg (97.76 KB. 1022x601 - viewed 284 times.)

* rtsa4.jpg (93.12 KB. 1028x598 - viewed 375 times.)

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olly
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« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2012, 11:21:03 PM »

interesting learning about alpha channels and would be great to fight within woods, since it's a bit tricky to do in Dark Omen, as it only provides a BTB boundary that blocks arrows (to provide cover) but bizarely can only be charged through and therefore creates normal navigation/movement issues.

These latest scenes look cool and having flora will be even better.

Smiley
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and back in Nuln, the ageing Graf Berhardt smiled his secret smile of pride whenever he heard the latest tales of his eldest son's ever growing chain of glorious victories -(sothr manual)
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« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2012, 01:21:47 AM »

Yeah alpha channels are a bit of a git on modern graphics engines to be frank, but you kinda have to lump it and get on with it.  In the case of the grass i've kept it quite small as the men will be small on the map so actually I havn't had to do anything special - but I suspect the trees will change that.


* rta5.jpg (61.12 KB. 1024x601 - viewed 299 times.)


Here's a shot of the undead city with some grass.  I'm not sure I'll keep the grass in the final game - it will at least be optional.

There are two approaches to doing grass in a game, you either have truly dynamic grass and focus it around the camera, or you decorate the map and just leave it there.  The second method is faster in runtime but the first method allows for denser grass in the near view.  Because this is a strategy game I felt the second option was best, it's also quick to implement.

The downside is that it makes generating the game level take longer - although I save the resulting 3D mesh out as an fbx model so that the next time the map is played I can just load the fbx again.  However if details on the map have changed, eg: The buildings have changed, then it would need regenerating so that grass doesnt grow through the buildings because the insides of many of them are visible.

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Smurf
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« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2012, 02:46:15 AM »

Of course option 3 for grass would be preferable, which is to come up with some kind of shader.  I am quite new to shaders myself, and I ruled it out for this project as that would be a lot of work for a trivial thing like grass to an RTS.

I wasn't however happy with the above, so I worked some more on it and this is the result.


* rtsa6.jpg (70.14 KB. 1022x596 - viewed 301 times.)

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olly
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« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2012, 12:46:00 PM »

very lush

Smiley
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